Police are putting more emphasis on drug-related investigations this year, reintroducing a dedicated 'Drugs Squad' as part of the clampdown.
The team of eight officers will work with Customs and Immigration and Jersey Community Police in an effort to combat organised crime in Jersey.
An additional member of the team will be springer spaniel Jack, the police’s detection dog, trained to find drugs, cash and guns.
Although their primary focus will be on anti-drugs operations ‘Operation Shark’ and ‘Operation Lion’, the team will also focus on other jobs if required.
Pictured: Police Chief Robin Smith warned those importing that "we will find you and arrest you."
Launched last year in the wake of a teen's death from suspected MDMA use, Operation Shark was a clampdown on organised crime aimed at leaving dealers "paranoid" and curbing the strain the illegal trade puts on families, the economy, health services, and the wider community. It has so far resulted in approximately £50,000 of seizures.
Operation Lion, meanwhile, led to the imprisonment of a gang over a £1m drug smuggling attempt following what was described as "one of the most complex drug-related investigations ever undertaken by Jersey law enforcement agencies."
In addition, the team will also be looking at other organised crime such as modern day slavery, criminal and sexual exploitation, money laundering and serious theft.
Chief of Police, Robin Smith said: “One of our key roles is to catch criminals and in doing so protect islanders. We aim to achieve better knowledge sharing and suitable resourcing to disrupt and prevent the work of those responsible for drug crime within our community."
Pictured: The boat used by a smuggling gang, who were later imprisoned for their £1m attempt to flood the island with drugs.
He continued: “By increasing our team to work with law enforcement partners and prosecutors we can ensure we use the most effective means to disrupt criminal groups. My warning to those considering importing or dealing drugs is we will find you and arrest you.”
In a similar shift, the Serious Crime Unit (SCU) has seen its title revert to the Criminal Investigation Department (CID). Police say the “symbolic” name change reflects a determination to get “back to basics.”
Pictured top: Police Chief Robin Smith and a haul last year as a result of the Operation Shark investigation.
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